Can Your Mouth Go Mobile?

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Rory B. Frederick
  • 908th ASTS
A deployer's guide for dental readiness:

You must be Dental Class 1 or 2 to deploy (Class 1: you have had a dental check-up and cleaning within the past 365 days. Class 2: you've had a check-up and need some dental work, but are not likely to have unbearable dental pain or swelling within a year).

Your current dental exam must not expire (current for 365 days) while on deployment.
You must have "Class 3" dental conditions resolved before deployment (a dental problem likely to cause unbearable pain or swelling within one year).

Check ARCnet "My Readiness Details" for your most current dental exam date and dental classification.

The best way to ensure that you are "dentally deployable" is to do your best to have good dental home care (i.e. brush, floss, fluoride mouth rinse, etc.), avoid excess sticky, sugary snacks and acidic, sugary drinks. 

You should also get to know your neighborhood dentist. Find a civilian dentist in your community for definitive dental care. Once you have established a "dental home" you will be able to complete a DD form 2813 to fulfill your annual dental exam requirement. The form can be given to your Unit Health Monitor or to the 908th ASTS Dental Flight front desk during drill weekends to update your status.

The Tricare dental insurance program is a great way to get access to a local dentist. You can find out about the program on the web at:

or you can call them at (855) 638-8371.
The Reserve Health Readiness Program (RHRP) is also a way to gain access to a dentist within 50 miles of the member's home of record. This program is free to the member, but limited to exams only. Information can be found at:

Reservists are also required to be dentally ready for deployment by having a "military" dental exam once every three years. These are scheduled with your unit health monitor and the 908th ASTS Dental Flight. The exam determines the most accurate dental classification for each Airman. If a member is found to be Class 3 at the military exam, you are given a time limit to get your issues resolved (regardless of deployment status). If a member goes past the time limit without getting class 3 issues resolved, they can be put in a "no-points/no-pay" status.

If you find yourself in a situation where you have a major dental problem and you have a deployment coming up, there are ways to get you ready in time. One of those ways is through pre-activation benefits. You are eligible for care through the active-duty dental plan prior to deployment. You must have "Delayed-effective-date" active-duty orders lasting more than 30 days in support of a contingency operation.